Being creative and making catchy designs are not enough for making up impressive and amazing designs, rather both you and your designs should comply with the factors like human conformity, usability and feasibility. A well-decorated house that is not comfy to live in and a lavish workstation with itchy chairs and tables are of no use. Here comes ergonomics.
What is the science of ergonomics and what sense it makes in designing? This question might have buzzed your mind when you saw the title of this article. But do not worry. Here, we are going to define ergonomics along with the tips and tricks of how can you incorporate this in designing works.
Ergonomics is basically a science that refers to completing a task effectively and making a product highly useful, handy and supportive for the targeted users. Ergonomics can be used in everything that exists under the sun, but when it comes to graphic designing, its worth increases manifold.
Here we lay down a few essential ergonomics tips for designers. These tips can help them not only saving their health and wealth but also making their designed products comfortable for others.
When You Need Ergonomic Arrangements:
A research suggests that if designers use computers for about an hour in a day, they can do it in normal settings; but if they have to use it up to four hours or more, they need to make proper ergonomic arrangements in everything including furniture, gadgets, software, computer and stationary.
Common Accessories for Better Ergonomics
Replace Mouse With Pen Tablet:
Since its very invention, mouse has been a matter of grave concern for physiotherapists who believe that using mouse for long time can cause some serious injuries to muscles and bones of elbow and arm. So what to do now? There is a replacement here. Designers can use pen tablet instead of mouse while drawing lines, filling colors and moving cursors here and there. Pen tablet is relatively safer, better and more efficient than mouse. So, first of all, you must replace your mouse with pen.
A Wacom Tablet.
Use Gaming Keyboard:
Designers have to switch from one app or program to another time and again. They have to copy and paste a lot of things in seconds. Doing this all with the help of right click and left click is really boring, tiresome and time consuming. Do not worry. There are available gaming keyboards with programmable hot-keys for this purpose. So, being a designer, it must be your prime priority to replace your simple keyboard with the gaming one. This will reduce your stress, save your time help you creating good designs instantly.
A4 Tech X7 G800V Gaming Keyboard.
Use Chairs With Armrests:
You may like to purchase some stylish and smart chairs for your workstation but they might not have armrests that are meant for protecting your bones and muscles from injuries in the long run. Always go for the chairs which have proper armrests as this will not only bear the burden of your arms but also support you while sitting down and rising up. According to a scientific research, people who use flat chairs for long are at higher risk of weakening their arm muscles.
Ergonomically Mastered Office Chair
Adjust Your Chair Height To Comfy Point:
Some designers are so deeply immersed in their work that they do not care for the height of their chair and their own posture. A chair that is too high or too low from table can cause the user backbone and neck pains. According to physiologists, reclined posture of 100-110 degrees is perfect and safe for workstations. Keep your posture straight all the time. Do not bend behind or forward as this will misshape you.
Wrap Pens And Pencils With Foam:
Holding, handling and using a thin pencil or pen is really an awful thing when you have to sit on workstation for many hours continuously. Sometimes, the grip over thing pens creates pain in your fingertips and joints. In order to avoid this, you must wrap your tablet pencils or other writing pens with a layer of soft foam. The foam will make pens somewhat thicker and, thus, you can have tighter grip over them. Moreover, foam will keep absorbing the sweat of your fingers.
Wear Support Braces And Gloves:
In the market, you may find various ergonomic products that can give designers comfort and make their work risk-free. Out of these, one is support braces/gloves that, if your wear, will save you wrist injuries. But make sure that anything you use is loose enough to let you hands be straight. There should not be any curve in your wrists or fingers while you are working.
Ergonomics of Environment
Use Ergonomics Accessories With Laptops:
Indeed, laptops are effectively outpaces desktops within a couple of years. But this has caused great harm to the bodies of users. While using a laptop, you have to keep you arms too high and head too leaning down. This posture creates problems for your head, arms and elbows. So, if you are using a laptop for making designs, always use the ergonomics accessories with it including keyboard, pen tablet, mouse, a wide screen and a comfy desk. Set all these accessories at the positions where all parts of your body, especially hands and arms, feel comfortable. Do not forget that working over laptops for long can be serious damaging for designers.
Arrange Adequate Lighting:
Always make sure that the place where you are sitting to work is properly exposed to lights. Try to use natural light as much as possible. At day time, roll up your curtains and let the sun rays come in and at night, use some source light above your head. But avoid too strong lights as this may impair or hurt your eyes. Beware that working in dim light may cause your headache and certain eye problems.
A designer’s work requires creatively and concentration. When your workstation is exposed to different sort of noises, you cannot be able to focus on your lines and colors. So always use some soundproof room for designing works. There should be no traffic or other unnatural noises around you. If you do not have a soundproof room, you may play some light music that will bar external noise. Remember one thing that more your workstation is comfy, higher will be your imagination.
Keep Switching Between Mouse And Pen:
When you get addicted to a gadget, it starts hurting you. No doubt, you must perform most of your routine commands and functions with pen tablet, but do not stick to it only. After a couple of hours with pen, switch to mouse for at least half an hour. This practice will make you feel relaxed and save you from some unknown and unnoticed injuries and pains. Some designers place pen tablet on the right and mouse on the left side of their keyboards and use both simultaneously. You can use this trick if you feel comfortable with it.
Change Settings To Single Click Option:
Normally, most computers are tuned on double click options which means you have to press the left button of your mouse or pen for two times to launch an application. This becomes messy and stressful sometimes when you are tasked with giving some release in short time. So the best thing is that you go to your control panel and change double click option with single click. This will save your time and energy at the same time. Moreover, this is greatly comfy too.
Ensure Ventilation In Your Workstation:
Computers and other gadgets that designers use release a lot of heat and, in turn, consume oxygen. Thus, if your room is airtight, you may start feeling nausea or headache. In order to avoid this, make sure that there is available a proper ventilation system in the room where you are sitting to work. To keep your mind and mood fresh, let some fresh natural air come in.
Ergonomics of Health
Use An Ergonomic Software:
While working, we do not realize how much time we have spent on computer and when we should take rest. There is available an ergonomic software that monitors your work and prompts you when this is necessary to take eye breaks and exercise breaks and when you need to wind up. Install such sort of software in your computer and activate it when you start working.
Workrave is a brilliant, freeware application for rest reminding.
Keep Adequate Distance Between Monitor And Your Eyes:
Do not sit closer to your monitor as this will hurt you eyes in the long run. Always maintain a safe distance between your chair and monitor. Some designers lean forward while working and, thus, they get nearer to monitor. This is an unhealthy practice. To be on safe side always, install a protective screen on your monitor. Love you eyes and they will help you viewing more and more designs in nature and art.
Give Breaks To Your Eyes:
Constantly looking at monitor for long time will make your eyes sour and itchy. So, ergonomists recommend that designers must give short breaks to their eyes after every 20 mints. Take your eyes away from monitor and peep out of your window so see some greenery or close your eyes for a couple of mints. Keep in mind that eye breaks are necessary to keep your lamps burning for the whole life.
Get Eye Checkups Regularly:
It is recommended by ergonomists that designers working on computers for long should keep visiting eye specialists for checkups with regular intervals. This will help them know their sight and changes that occur in it. Thus, they can go for medical solutions on time in case of any problem.
Take Exercise Breaks:
Muscles and bones get stiffed by sitting continuously for many hours. So sink your work routine with small exercise breaks after every one or two hours. Come out of your chair and practice some gentle moves to relax your muscles. Take a little walk in your room or outside if possible. Sit on rest chair for a few mints. Open your window and take long breathes. This all will help you rekindle your energy and refresh your mind.
Keep Liquidating Yourself:
You must keep fresh water and juices on your table when you are working. Keep taking sips time to time. This will do not let your energy level and blood pressure go down. Sometimes we feel headache by sitting in front of monitors for long. This is due to the fact that our sugar and energy levels reduce. To avoid this, the best way is to use liquids all the time.
Do One Thing At One Time:
It is human nature that we can concentrate on one thing at one time and when we try to divide it, things start messing up. Some designers stuff up themselves with multiple projects and tasks and, thus, they cannot be able to put utmost creatively and attention in anyone. Moreover, this makes them feel bored and fatigued. So the best thing is that you perform one task at a time. Take to end a project that you start and then plunge into others.
Use Comfy Shoes:
Some ladies use high heels that do not let feet be comfortable. Some men also wear weird shoes. So make sure that your shoes are comfy enough to keep your legs at east all the time you are on your chair.
It is an admitted fact that health is wealth. Without good health, you cannot be able to do anything good in your life. Taking care of their health is necessary for all human beings, but in the case of designers, this becomes more important. This is due to the fact that the entire designing work is owed to creatively and initiation and these things are not possible without sound physical and mental health. Therefore, designing experts and health practitioners strongly recommend ergonomic settings at workstations. By practicing the above-mentioned tips, designers can enjoy good health all the time and the products they design will also healthful for the users.